Month of November
The 7th Day
Commemoration of Our Father among the Saints,
Willibrord, Bishop of Utrecht,
Enlightener of the Low Countries
At Great Vespers
After the Introductory Psalm, we chant “Blessed is the man…”, the first antiphon.
On “Lord, I have cried…”, 8 stichera: 4 in Tone III: Spec. Mel.: “Great is the power of Thy Cross…”—
Great is the power of Thy saint, O Lord! For though born in Northumbria, he now worketh miracles throughout the world; for becoming the glorious apostle to the heathen Frisians, he taught them to pray to the one true God.
Great is the glory of the Monastery of Ripon, O Savior; for the wondrous Willibrord, entrusted to its care, was filled there with knowledge divine and radiant grace, and advanced in favor with both God and his fellow men.
Great is the exultation of the nether lands, O Master of all; for the holy Willibrord, making his abode therein, began to clear away the tares which choked the field of God, uprooting the falsehood of idolatry from men’s hearts.
Great is the boast of the Monastery of Echternach, O King of all; for the glorious Willibrord, having toiled for Thee until the end of his life, passed to his eternal reward therein, and was laid to rest with honor within its sacred confines.
And 4 stichera in Tone II: Spec. Mel.: “With what wreaths of praise shall we crown…”—
With what wreaths of praise shall we crown the holy Willibrord? For as a good husbandman he cultivated the fertile ground of men’s souls with the plough of the Gospel, and in the furrows thereof sowed the seed of the Holy Orthodox Faith, which, watered by the dews of heaven and warmed by the fervor of grace divine, bore an abundant harvest for Christ the Master.
With what robes of laudation shall we invest the sacred one? For, chosen by the will of God, he bowed to the wishes of his holy companions, and set out for Old Rome to receive episcopal consecration. But before he arrived, the Lord told the venerable Sergius of Rome in an angelic vision that the holy Willibrord would, by divine grace, bring the light of Christ unto many souls.
What hymns of ours are fit to magnify Willibrord? For, undaunted, he went boldly to the court of the heathen Radbod, King of the Frisians, and preached the Gospel to him with zeal and fervor; but when his words fell on stony soil, the holy one, none dismayed, proclaimed the glad tidings to the pagan Danes, and for his labors he hath joined the apostles in the kingdom of Christ.
What spiritual songs can we chant to exalt the glorious Willibrord, who at his consecration received the name Clement, in accordance with his temperament? For with pity and compassion he bound up the wounds of men’s souls, and led them by the path of righteousness to the kingdom of the Most High, nourishing them with the divine sustenance of the Mysteries of Christ.
Glory…: Idiomelon, in Tone VIII—
As a tireless preacher and faithful herald of the Most High, O saint, thou didst travel to all the cities, towns and villages in thy charge, exhorting men to hold fast to the doctrines of Orthodoxy, to cleave faithfully to the precepts of piety, and resolutely to set aside their former errors. And to serve their spiritual needs and make them steadfast in the Holy Faith, thou didst raise up churches and monasteries throughout those parts,
ordaining the devout as priests and deacons, to perform the Holy Mysteries for the nourishment of men’s souls, and to instruct them wisely in the ordinances of Christ, that, ascending from earth to the noetic heights, they might find rest in the kingdom of heaven.
Now & ever…: Dogmatic theotokion, in the same tone—
In His love for mankind, the King of heaven appeared on earth and dwelt among men; for He Who received flesh from the pure Virgin and came forth from her having received human nature, is the only Son of God, two in nature but not hypostasis. Therefore, proclaiming Him to be truly perfect God and perfect man, we confess Christ our God. Him do thou beseech, O Mother unwedded, that our souls find mercy!
Entrance. Prokimenon of the day. Three readings:
READING FROM PROVERBS
The memory of the just is praised, and the blessing of the Lord is upon his head. Blessed is the man who hath found wisdom, and the mortal who knoweth prudence. For it is better to traffic for her, than for treasures of gold and silver. And she is more valuable than precious stones: no precious thing is equal to her in value. For length of existence and years of life are in her right hand; and in her left hand are wealth and glory: out of her mouth righteousness proceedeth, and she carrieth law and mercy upon her tongue. Hearken to me, O children, for I will speak solemn truths. Blessed is the man who shall keep my ways; for my outgoings are the outgoings of life, and in them is prepared favor from the Lord. Ye, O men, do I exhort; and utter my voice to the sons of men. I, wisdom, have built up; upon counsel, knowledge and understanding have I called. Counsel and safety are mine; prudence is mine, and strength is mine. I love those that love me; they that seek me shall find grace. O ye simple, understand subtlety, and ye that are untaught, imbibe knowledge. Hearken unto me again; for I will speak solemn truths. For my throat shall meditate truth; and false lips are an abomination before me. All the words of my mouth are in righteousness; there is nothing in them wrong or perverse. They are all evident to those that understand, and right to those that find knowledge. For I will instruct you in truth, that your hope may be in the Lord, and ye may be filled with the Spirit.
READING FROM THE WISDOM OF SOLOMON
The mouth of the righteous droppeth wisdom, and the lips of wise men know grace. The mouths of the wise do meditate wisdom, and righteousness shall deliver them from death. At the death of a just man his hope perisheth not; for a righteous son is born for life, and in his good works he taketh hold of the fruit of righteousness. The righteous always have light, and from the Lord they acquire grace and glory. The tongue of the wise knoweth what is good, and wisdom resteth in their heart. The Lord loveth holy hearts, and all that are blameless in the way are acceptable to Him. The wisdom of the Lord enlighteneth the countenance of the understanding; for she overtaketh those who desire her, and is readily seen by those who desire her. Whoso seeketh her early shall have no great travail; and whoso keepeth watch for her shall quickly be without care. For she goeth about seeking such as are worthy of her, she manifesteth herself favorably unto them in her ways. Vice shall never prevail against wisdom. For the sake thereof I became a lover of her beauty, and came to love her, and sought her out from my youth; I desired to make her my spouse, for the Master of all loved her. For she is privy to the mysteries of the knowledge of God and a seeker of His works. Her labors are virtues, she teacheth chastity and prudence, justice and fortitude, which are such things as men can have nothing more profitable in their life. If a man desire much experience, she knoweth things of old, and conjectureth aright what is to come; she knoweth the subtleties of speeches and can expound dark sentences; she foreseeth signs and wonders, and the events of seasons and times. Unto all she is a counselor of good things, for there is immortality in her, and glory in the communication of her words. Wherefore, I conversed with the Lord and prayed unto Him, and with my whole heart I said: O God of my fathers and Lord of mercy, Who hast made all things by Thy word and ordained man by Thy wisdom, that he should have dominion over the creatures which Thou hast made, and that he may order the world in holiness and righteousness: Give me wisdom which sitteth by Thy throne, and reject me not from among Thy children, for I am Thy servant and the son of Thy handmaid. Send her forth from heaven, from Thy holy habitation and the throne of Thy glory, that being present with me she may teach me what is well-pleasing in Thy sight. She shall guide me to understanding and preserve me in her glory. For the thoughts of mortal men are all miserable, and their devices are but uncertain.
READING FROM THE WISDOM OF SOLOMON.
When the righteous is praised, the people will rejoice; for his memory is immortality, because it is known with God, and with men; for his soul pleased the Lord. Love wisdom, therefore, O men, and live; desire her, and ye shall be instructed. For the beginning of her is love and the observation of the law. Honor wisdom, that ye may reign for evermore. I will tell you, and will not hide from you the mysteries of God, for he it is who is the instructor of wisdom, the director of the wise, the master of all understanding and activity. And wisdom teacheth all understanding; for in her is a spirit understanding and holy, the brightness of the everlasting light, and the image of the goodness of God. She maketh friends of God, and prophets; she is more beautiful than the sun, and above all the constellations of the stars; compared with the light, she is found pre-eminent. She hath delivered from pain them that please her, and guided them in right paths, given them knowledge of holy things, defended them from their enemies, and given them a mighty struggle, that they might all know that godliness is stronger than all; vice shall never prevail against wisdom, neither shall judgment pass away without convicting the evil. For they said to themselves, reasoning unrighteously: Let us oppress the righteous man, let us not spare his holiness, neither need we be ashamed of the ancient gray hairs of the aged, for our strength shall be a law unto us; let us lie in wait for the righteous, for he is displeasing to us, opposeth our doings, upbraideth us with our offending the law, and denounceth to our infamy the transgressions of our training. He professeth to have the knowledge of God, and calleth himself the child of the Lord. He is become a reproof to our thoughts, and is grievous even for us to behold; for his life is not like other men’s, his ways are of another fashion. We are accounted by him as a mockery, and he avoideth our ways as filth, and pronounceth the end of the just to be blessed. Let us see if his words be true; let us test what things happen to him. Let us examine him with mockery and torture, that we may know his meekness and prove his forbearance. Let us condemn him with a shameful death, for by his own words shall he be visited. Such things did they imagine, and were deceived; for their own wickedness blinded them. As for the mysteries of God, they knew them not; neither bethought they that Thou alone art God, who hast the power of life and death, savest in time of tribulation, and deliverest from all evil; who art compassionate and merciful, givest grace to Thy saints and opposest the prideful with Thine own arm.
At Litia, the sticheron of the temple, and this sticheron of the saint, in Tone III—
Let us magnify the holy Willibrord, for God, Who is wondrous in His saints, hath exalted him with divers great wonders, that those in error, perceiving in him the power of the Lord Most High, might hearken to his preaching, casting off the darkness of their errors and embracing the supernal light of grace divine, moving the angels of heaven to rejoice with gladness over the conversion of so many sinners.
Glory…, in Tone VI—
Full of the grace of God, O Willibrord, like a vessel filled to overflowing with heavenly nectar, by thine entreaties to Christ, the Well-spring of good things, thou didst call forth sweet water in a barren place, that thy thirsty companions might drink their fill, so that, glorifying God Who worked this awesome wonder for them, they might find strength for the apostolic labors which lay before them.
Now & ever…: Theotokion, in the same tone—
O Theotokos, thou art the true vine who hast budded forth for us the Fruit of life. We entreat thee: Pray thou, O Mistress, with the holy Willibrord and all the saints, that our souls find mercy.
Aposticha stichera of the saint, in Tone II: Spec. Mel.: “When from the Tree…”—
When the pagan king would not accept the word of thy preaching, then heeding the words of thy Master, O divinely wise and holy Willibrord, thou didst depart forthwith from his city, shaking the dust from thine apostolic feet, and didst hasten to the heathen Danes, to bring them the light of Gospel of the Lord
Stichos: The mouth of the righteous is exercised in wisdom, and his tongue shall speak of judgment.
When thou didst find the Danes likewise in thrall to idolatry and superstition, and resistant to thy preaching, O Willibrord, then didst thou choose from among them thirty youths, whom thou didst take abroad for instruction in the sublime Faith, immersing them in the laver of regeneration, lest their souls perish eternally.
Stichos: My mouth shall speak wisdom, and the meditation of my heart shall be of understanding.
When, as thou didst sail back to Christendom, a great tempest compelled thee to seek refuge on a solitary island which the heathen held sacred to their ungodly religion, then, O Willibrord, thou didst bravely baptize thy charges in the spring of the false god, and didst slaughter cattle dedicated to him, to serve as food for thy companions.
Glory…: Idiomelon, in Tone I—
Great was the wrath of the iniquitous king when he learned how thou hadst insulted his false gods, O Willibrord, and breathing threats and seeking vengeance against thee, he cast lots to see if he might rightly put thee to death; but the God of all protected his chosen herald, and prevented the lots from decreeing thy death.
Wherefore, O saint, thou didst remember the words of the Lord, Who said to His disciples: “Ye shall be brought before governors and kings for My sake, for a testimony against them and the gentiles. But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what to say. For it is not ye who speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you”; and thou didst boldly denounce the pagan gods as demons who ensnare men’s souls by rank falsehood, and didst fearlessly proclaim the one true God, who offereth men life everlasting.
Now & ever…: Theotokion, in the same tone—
Behold, the prophecy of Isaiah hath been fulfilled, for a Virgin hath given birth, and after giving birth hath remained a Virgin as before. For God was born; therefore He began nature anew. O Mother of God, disdain not the supplications of thy servants, which are offered unto thee in thy temple; but as thou bearest the Compassionate One in thine arms, have pity on thy servants, and beseech Him, that our souls be saved.
After the Blessing of the Loaves, the troparion of the saint, in Tone I—
Moved to compassion by the plight of the heathen, who languished in noetic darkness, ignorant of the one, true God, O clement and pious Willibrord, thou didst leave behind all things comfortable and familiar, and didst set out for the land of the Frisians, to convert them, by thy preaching, to the peerless Christian Faith, with zeal enlightening them in the laver of regeneration. Twice
And “Virgin Theotokos, rejoice…”, once.
At “God is the Lord…”, the troparion of the holy hierarch, twice; Glory…, Now & ever…: Resurrectional theotokion.
After the first chanting of the Psalter, this sessional hymn, in Tone III: Spec. Mel.: “Of the divine Faith…”—
With faith divine the glorious Willibrord hearkened to the call of the Master of all; and, shouldering his cross like a light burden, he diligently toiled in the vineyard of the Lord, harvesting a rich vintage of men’s souls. And in the press of his apostolic labors he produced a wine well-pleasing to God. Twice
Glory…, Now & ever…: Theotokion—
Thou wast the divine tabernacle of the Word, O thou who alone art the all-pure Virgin Mother, who dost surpass the angels in purity. With the divine waters of thy prayers, O pure one, cleanse me who above all others am dust and have defiled myself with carnal transgressions; and grant me great mercy.
After the second chanting of the Psalter, this sessional hymn, in Tone IV: Spec. Mel.: “Go thou quickly before…”—
Now is Luxembourg filled with the uncreated light of grace on this, the sacred memorial of the God-bearing Willibrord; for having passed from this life in the aura of sanctity and the sweet savor of holiness, his sacred remains lie enshrined within its borders, at Echternach, whence miracles ever pour forth even in our times, in witness to his favor with the Lord. Twice
Glory…, Now & ever…: Theotokion—
By thy divine birthgiving, O pure one, thou hast renewed the mortal essence of the earthborn which becometh corrupt in the passions, and thou hast raised up all from death to the life of incorruption. Wherefore, as is meet, we all call thee blessed, O all-glorious Virgin, as thou didst foretell.
Polyeleos, and this Magnification—
We magnify thee, O holy hierarch Willibrord our father, and we honor thy holy memory; for thou dost entreat Christ God in our behalf.
Selected Psalm verses—
A Hear this, all ye nations; give ear, all ye that inhabit the world. [Ps. 48: 2]
B My mouth shall speak wisdom, and the meditation of my heart shall be of understanding. [Ps. 48: 4]
A Come, ye children, hearken unto me; I will teach you the fear of the Lord. [Ps. 33: 12]
B I have proclaimed the good tidings of Thy righteousness in the great congregation. [Ps. 39: 10]
A Thy truth and Thy salvation have I declared. [Ps. 39: 11]
B I will declare Thy name unto my brethren, in the midst of the church will I hymn Thee. [Ps. 21: 23]
A That I may hear the voice of Thy praise, and tell of all Thy wondrous works. [Ps. 25: 7]
B O Lord, I have loved the beauty of Thy house, and the place where Thy glory dwelleth. [Ps. 25: 8]
A I have hated the congregation of evil-doers, and with the ungodly will I not sit. [Ps. 25: 5]
B For I have kept the ways of the Lord, and I have not acted impiously toward my God. [Ps. 17: 22]
A The mouth of the righteous shall meditate wisdom, and his tongue shall speak of judgment. [Ps. 36: 30]
B His righteousness abideth unto ages of ages. [Ps. 110: 3]
A Thy priests shall be clothed with righteousness, and Thy righteous shall rejoice. [Ps. 131: 9]
B Blessed are they that dwell in Thy house; unto ages of ages shall they praise Thee. [Ps. 83: 5]
Glory…, Now & ever…Alleluia… Thrice.
After the Polyeleos, this sessional hymn, in Tone V: Spec. Mel.: “The Word Who is equally unoriginate…”—
Having acquired a nobility of soul unmingled with base vices, O glorious Willibrord, thou becamest a most pure receptacle of the divine Spirit, radiantly receiving His effulgence and illumining thy flock; wherefore, we beseech thee: Entreat peace in behalf of the world. Twice
Glory…, Now & ever…: Theotokion—
O pure one, earnestly entreat the Lord God Who for our sake became incarnate of Thee, that He take pity on us who have become corrupt in transgressions, and avert His wrath and anger from those who with faith unceasingly honor and praise His power and might.
Song of Ascents, the first antiphon of Tone IV.
Prokimenon, in Tone IV—
My mouth shall speak wisdom, and the meditation of my heart shall be of understanding.
Stichos: The mouth of the righteous is exercised in wisdom, and his tongue shall speak of judgment.
Let every breath praise the Lord.
GOSPEL ACCORDING TO JOHN, § 35, FROM THE MIDPOINT
[JN. 10: 1-9]
The Lord said to the Jews who came to Him: “Verily, verily, I say unto you: He who entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But he who entereth in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. To him the porter openeth; and the sheep hear his voice: and he calleth his own sheep by name, and leadeth them out. And when he putteth forth his own sheep, he goeth before them, and the sheep follow him: for they know his voice. And a stranger will they not follow, but will flee from him: for they know not the voice of strangers.” This parable spake Jesus unto them: but they understood not what things they were which He spake unto them. Then said Jesus unto them again: “Verily, verily, I say unto you, I am the door of the sheep. All that ever came before Me are thieves and robbers: but the sheep did not hear them. I am the door: by Me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture.”
After Psalm 50, this sticheron, in Tone VI—
Invested from on high with the Spirit of God, with boldness thou didst proclaim the name of the Holy Trinity to the heathen, O holy hierarch Willibrord. And arrayed in the full armor of the Orthodox Faith, with the weaponry of Truth and piety thou didst cut down hordes of the demons; wherefore, thou hast been led into the mansions of heaven, where the King of kings hath rewarded thee with a splendid abode. And now, as thou hast acquired boldness before Him, entreat Him earnestly, that He grant peace unto our souls.
Canon of Supplication to the All-holy Theotokos [the Paraclesis], in Tone VIII, with 6 troparia, including the irmos; and that of the holy hierarch, with 8 troparia, the acrostic whereof is: “Plead clemency for us, holy Willibrord”, in Tone IV—
Irmos: Parting the abyss of the Red Sea, God drowned Pharaoh therein, but led Moses across to the wilderness dryshod, and rained down manna as food for the people of Israel, in that He is mighty.
Parting the waves of the North Sea, Willibrord fearlessly led the people of God away from the tyranny of the noetic Pharaoh to the promised land of heaven; wherefore, let us praise him.
Let Northumbria, land of saints, exult also in Willibrord its son, and let the waters of the River Humber leap up in jubilation, thanking the Almighty for His infinite and ineffable mercy.
Even when thou wast in thy mother’s womb, O Willibrord, the Most High showed that thou wast destined to be His chosen vessel; for He revealed in a vision that thou wouldst shine with grace.
Theotokion: All the peoples of the North praise thee, O most hymned Theotokos, for Willibrord taught them that, in manner transcending nature, thou gavest birth to the Creator and Savior of their souls.
Irmos: The people of Israel drank from the hard and rough-hewn stone, which poured forth water at Thy command; and Thou, O Christ, art the Rock and Life whereon the Church is established, which crieth: Hosanna! Blessed art Thou Who comest!
Dwelling from childhood at the Monastery of Ripon, by divine grace, and under the tutelage of the holy Wilfrid, thou didst grow in knowledge and wisdom, advancing in favor with both man and God, and crying to Him: Hosanna! Blessed art Thou Who comest!
Cultivating the field of thy soul with the plough of asceticism and the hoe of abstinence, thou didst grow in fervent love for Christ, in humility unfeigned, and in zeal for knowledge divine, so that thy youth produced the wisdom of ripe old age, O saint of God.
Laden with the fruits of piety, like a merchant’s vessel, O favorite of the Lord, thou didst depart from the haven of Ripon and didst sail to Ireland, where the saintly Egbert and Wigbert taught thee how to trade thy talants wisely for thy heavenly Master.
Theotokion: Each rank of angelic beings singeth its praises unto thee as the Mother of their Creator, surpassing them in honor and dignity far more highly than the skies lie above the earth; yet disdain not the meager hymns we offer thee in our lowliness.
Sessional hymn, in Tone III: Spec. Mel.: “Awed by the beauty of thy virginity…”—
Awed by the magnitude of the grace of God which dwelleth in thee, O godly Willibrord, which is revealed in the multitude of miracles wrought through thy merciful intercession, we cry out to thee in compunction, entreating thee to heal our bodily infirmities and to repel the onslaughts of the demons by thy supplications. Twice
Glory…, Now & ever…: Theotokion—
In that thou art a never-cultivated vine, O Virgin, thou didst give rise unto the most comely Cluster, Who exudeth for us the wine of salvation which maketh glad the souls and bodies of all. Wherefore, ever blessing thee as the cause of good things, with the angel we cry out to thee: Rejoice, O thou who art full of grace!
Irmos: Out of love for Thine image Thou didst stand affixed to the Cross, O Compassionate One, and the nations melted away; for Thou art my strength and boast, O Thou Who lovest mankind.
Multitudes of nations languished in noetic darkness; but by thy preaching, O holy one, their ignorance melted away, and they came to love above all the One God, Who alone loveth mankind.
Embarking from Ireland, O Willibrord, thou didst cross the frigid waters of the sea, and sailing up the Rhine didst put in at fortunate Utrecht, preaching God Who is thy strength and boast.
Neither the king of the Frisians nor his subjects welcomed thine apostolic labors in their midst, O all-praised one; wherefore, thou didst prudently return to the Christian kingdom of the Franks.
Theotokion: Colts and foals were at thy side, O Virgin Maiden, when thou didst bear the King of all, incarnate as a babe for our salvation; wherefore, transform us from irrational to rational beings.
Irmos: O radiant children of the Church, receive ye the fiery dew of the Spirit, the cleansing of sins; for now from Sion hath gone forth the law, the grace of the Spirit in tongues of fire.
Yielding in nowise to the ingrained habits and passions of men, O venerable father, thou didst everywhere uproot all idolatrous rites and practices, instilling in the people the laws of God.
From the furrows of men’s hearts didst thou uproot the tares of sins, O saint, sowing in them the seed of life, and watering them with the dew of the Spirit, that they might bear rich fruit.
Observing thy zeal in proclaiming the tidings of salvation in their domain, the renowned Clovis and Pepin sent thee to Rome, that thou mightest be consecrated by the grace of the Spirit.
Theotokion: Reigning as Queen, enthroned eternally at the right hand of thy Son and God, O Mistress, thou dost not spurn the petitions of thy lowly servants, looking upon us with tender compassion.
Irmos: Let not the watery tempest drown me, nor the abyss destroy me; for I have been cast into the depths of the heart of the sea. Wherefore, like Jonah I cry aloud: Let my life ascend to Thee out of the corruption of evils, O God!
Utterly convinced of thine unworthiness, O Willibrord, thou didst steadfastly resist hierarchal election; but compelled by thy brethren, like Jonah thou didst cry: Let my life ascend to Thee out of the corruption of evils, O God!
Sergius, Pope of Rome, was warned in an angelic vision of thine approach, O holy one; wherefore, receiving thee with all honors, he gladly consecrated thee amid a multitude of the faithful in the great Basilica of Peter the Apostle.
Holy vestments, costly vessels for the celebration of the divine Mysteries of Christ, and the precious relics of the saints and martyrs, did the pious Sergius give thee for the advancement of thine apostolic labors, O blessed one.
Theotokion: O most blessed Bride of God, pure Ever-virgin, on bended knee do we offer thee homage and obeisance, beseeching thy loving-kindness toward us, who were given thee in adoption by thine all-merciful Son at His Cross.
Kontakion, in Tone I—
With wreaths of praise let us crown the glorious Willibrord as a luminary who shone forth, a herald who proclaimed the glad tidings of the triune God, an unshakable pillar of the Orthodox Church, and the merciful intercessor for the Low Lands, who abolished the demonic worship of idols therein, and who prayeth to Christ God, that He grant our souls peace and great mercy.
Ikos: Thou shonest forth in a heathen land as a beacon of holiness, a brilliant lamp of grace, a light shining in the wilderness with the grace of God; wherefore, we who honor thy memory cry aloud unto thee: Rejoice, O holy hierarch, who didst increase in sanctity from thy youth; rejoice, thou who wast vigilant in all things with a good conscience! Rejoice, O most lauded luminary of Christ; rejoice, thou who didst teach all to keep the commandments of God! Rejoice, thou who didst shine forth like the sun, from the West even unto the North; rejoice, thou who, seeing the Frisians languishing in demonic idolatry, didst piously yearn for their conversion to the Faith of Christ! Rejoice, O ever-memorable wonderworker; rejoice, healer of souls and bodies! Rejoice, O Willibrord who art unceasing in thine entreaties to the Lord, that He grant our souls peace and great mercy!
Irmos: The melodious music of instruments sounded forth, calling men to worship the inanimate idol wrought of gold; but the radiant grace of the Comforter preferreth that they cry: O only Trinity, Who art equal in power and equally without beginning, blessed art Thou!
Leaving Old Rome, thou didst return to the field of thine apostolic labors, O holy hierarch, where thou didst preach the Gospel with yet greater vigor, casting down the graven idols of the pagans and proclaiming unto all the consubstantial and indivisible Trinity.
Ye cities of Antwerp and Utrecht, clap your hands in gladness and rejoice exceedingly, for the clement Willibrord, shining with the grace of the Spirit Comforter, confirmed your people in the Christian Faith, calling them to worship the Trinity in spirit and in truth.
Walking, fearless, among the heathen, like Daniel among the lions, O Willibrord, undaunted, thou didst preach Christ to Radbod, King of the Frisians, and his people, admonishing them to worship the beginningless Trinity, equal in power and of the same essence.
Theotokion: In hymns of laudation do we lift our voices to praise the all-immaculate Mother of our God; for by bowing to the will of the Father at the words of angelic herald, she conceived the divine Logos in her most pure womb through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit.
Irmos: Be glad, O Jerusalem! Keep festival, ye who love Sion! For the Lord of hosts, Who reigneth forever, is come! Let all the earth show reverence before His face, and let it cry aloud: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!
Leaving the obdurate Frisians, who would not accept thy preaching, thou didst go rather to the ungodly Danes, to bring them the true Light, and didst strive to teach them to cry: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!
Landing on the Island of Heligoland, thou wast not afraid to defy the false deity Fosite, having his cattle slaughtered to feed thy companions, O saint; and thou didst not fear to use his spring as a font for Christian baptism.
Informed of thy disdain for his false god, O holy hierarch, Radbod, enraged, swore revenge for thy temerity; but though he cast lots many times to determine thy death, the power of the true God overshadowed thee.
Theotokion: Before thee, O Lady full of grace divine, do we all fall down, piteously uplifting our voices in supplication, raising our hands in ardent supplication, and crying out in compunction: Bless the Lord, all ye works of the Lord!
Irmos: We all magnify Thy love for mankind, O Christ our Savior, Thou glory of Thy servants and crown of the faithful, Who hast magnified the memory of her who gave Thee birth.
Released by the heathen despite thy zeal for the one God, O Willibrord, thou didst return to Utrecht, where thou didst zealously shepherd and tend thy reason-endowed flock.
Of thee doth the Monastery of Echternach boast as its founder and protector, O favorite of God, for when thou didst pass on to thy Lord, thy precious relics were entombed therein.
Rejoice greatly, ye Orthodox Christians of the Low Lands, for upon you the Most High hath deigned to bestow a great a healer and sublime intercessor, the holy hierarch Willibrord!
Theotokion: Death will come inexorably to each of us when thy Son so willeth, O Mother of the Word; but in that dread hour intercede for us, thy servants, who magnify thy memory.
Exapostilarion: Spec. Mel.: “Thou hast visited us…”—
Afire with divine zeal for the Holy Faith, O godly Willibrord, thou didst forsake thy homeland and brethren to bring the light of Christ to those benighted by the delusions of the demons.
Glory…, Now & ever…: Theotokion—
God hath given thee to us, O pure one, as a refuge, strength and help amid tribulations and evil circumstances. Wherefore, deliver us all from all our misfortunes.
On the Praises, 4 stichera, in Tone I: Spec. Mel.: “Joy of the ranks of heaven…”—
Wondrous was thy passing, O holy one! For, immersed in prayer, one of thy disciples beheld thy soul ascending on high, surrounded by the radiance of grace and upborne by a great multitude of angels
Wondrous was thy burial, O saint! For the sarcophagus prepared for thee was discovered to be too short; but then, by the mercy of God, it was found to be of sufficient length to accommodate thy full stature.
Wondrous indeed are thy many miracles, O hierarch of Christ! For by the oil which burneth in the lamp over thy precious relics doth the Almighty heal the infirm who earnestly have recourse to thee with faith,
Wondrous is thine intercession on high, O blessed Willibrord! For, conveying the entreaties of the sick to the dread throne of the Lord, thou dost obtain the curing of their manifold afflictions of both body and soul.
Glory…: Idiomelon, in the same tone—
Scattered were thy precious relics, O Willibrord, when the hosts of the ungodly laid waste to Echternach and impiously razed thy sacred shrine. But lest the words of the Psalmist be fulfilled in them, that there was none to bury the dead bodies of the servants of the Lord, they who honored thy memory gathered up thy holy remains with reverence and preserved them as an ever-flowing fountain of healings and cures for those who approach them with faith.
Now & ever…: Theotokion automelon, in the same tone—
Joy of the ranks of heaven and mighty intercessor for men on earth art thou, O pure Virgin. Save us who flee unto thee, for on thee, after God, have we set our hope, O Theotokos.
On the Beatitudes, 8 troparia: 4 from Ode III and 4 from Ode VI of the canon of the holy hierarch.
Prokimenon, in Tone I—
My mouth shall speak wisdom, and the meditation of my heart shall be of understanding.
Stichos: Hear this, all ye nations; give ear, all ye that inhabit the world.
Epistle to the Hebrews, §318 (Heb. 7: 26-8: 2)
Brethren: Such a High Priest became us, Who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: for this He did once, when He offered up Himself. For the law maketh men high priests who have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the Son, Who is consecrated for evermore. Now of the things which we have spoken this is the sum: We have such a High Priest, Who is set on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens; a Minister of the sanctuary, and of the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, and not man.
Alleluia of the holy hierarch, in Tone II—
Stichos: The mouth of the righteous shall meditate wisdom, and his tongue shall speak of judgment.
Stichos: The law of God is in his heart, and his steps shall not be tripped.
Gospel according to John, § 36 (Jn. 10: 9-16)
The Lord said to the Jews who came to Him: “I am the door: by Me if any man enter in, he shall be saved, and shall go in and out, and find pasture. The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly. I am the good shepherd: the good shepherd giveth his life for the sheep. But he who is a hireling, and not the shepherd, whose own the sheep are not, seeth the wolf coming, and leaveth the sheep, and fleeth: and the wolf catcheth them, and scattereth the sheep. The hireling fleeth, because he is a hireling, and careth not for the sheep. I am the good Shepherd, and know My sheep, and am known of Mine. As the Father knoweth Me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down My life for the sheep. And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear My voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.”
Communion verse of the holy hierarch—
In everlasting remembrance shall the righteous be, he shall not be afraid of evil tidings.